By Harry Welty
When I was a little kid and got hurt my Mom would quiet me by telling me, ďYour Grandfather was shot and he didnít cry.Ē Since heíd been shot in battle and been awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor I was impressed into a pallid facsimile of his stoicism (except where hypodermic needles were concerned).
Since my Grandfather was the
long serving Republican Auditor of Kansas I was also inclined to pay close
attention to my Grandfatherís political opinions. For instance, my
Grandfather advised me that it was foolish to vote for Democrats because they
My Grandfatherís conviction
was shared by all Republicans of his era. As far back as Pearl Harbor
Republicans suspected that FDR had tricked
This prejudice against
Democrats was echoed most famously by Grandfatherís fellow
Three generations ago,
between the world wars, Republicans turned their back on internationalism.
Still smarting from
Today itís the Democrats
who seem most likely return
There are other similarly startling changes.
The Party of Lincoln was not
the party of ďfree trade.Ē Instead it championed tariffs to protect
Ah, but winning votes can break a partyís resolve. When George Bush imposed a tariff to protect the steel industry he shocked NAFTA loving Republicans. He has lately been flirting with the idea of dropping the tariff. It will be interesting to see what he does about this as he approaches the next election.
Civil Rights is another case in point. Today's Republicans are apt to call affirmative action ďracial preferencing.Ē Yet when I was young many, if not most, Republicanís were quite supportive of civil rights legislation. It was Democrats, ďSouthern Democrats,Ē who fought against civil rights. Now that the South has swung Republican that plank has been turned on its end.
Since I grew up thinking I was Republican and that it was part of my familyís heritage I havenít let a lifetime of disagreements with the party chase me off, political correctness be damned. Since Democrats have been equally bone headed on a whole different set of issues Iíve resisted the temptation to defect. Party affiliation, no matter how tenuous, gives a person a little more leverage than that enjoyed by idealists who canít tolerate compromise.
As a young man I was fueled
with missionary zeal for the GOP despite my differences with it. Moving to
While I was trying to be a
petunia in an onion patch another young man approached the Party in the
Republican end of
Trapped by a loyalty to a distant legacy, Iíve never been able to be that pragmatic. Iím like a man who wonít divorce his unfaithful wife. Given the pendulum swing of politics Republicans, following the example of all good opportunists, will just graft popular Democrat ideas into their platform.
Socialized medicine anyone?
is a small time politician who lets it all hang out at www.snowbizz.com